A stop snoring pillow is a specially designed pillow that forces or encourages a sleeping position that prevents or curtails snoring (and incidentally, sleep apnea).
They seem to fall into two categories:
As we've seen on our other snoring-related pages, the two major, proximate contributors to snoring are fleshy bits in-and-around your throat (along with flaccid throat muscles that should otherwise keep those fleshy bits out of your airway), and a tongue that falls back and partially or fully blocks the airway.
There is some evidence that a proper angle of head-and-neck, properly and comfortably supported, can allow you to sleep on your back without having your tongue fall back toward your throat and block the airway.
The alternative, sleeping on your side or belly, has gravity working for you - if your tongue muscle gets slack while you sleep, the tongue just droops to the side, rather than toward the back of your throat.
Either of those fixes can help keep you from snoring if your other contributing factors are not too severe.
If you just plain hate having to sleep on your side, then the neck-tilt style of stop snoring pillow is more likely the one for you. If you already are a mostly side-sleeper, and you've still got a snoring problem, then chances are that neither of the pillows will be of any help, and you'll need to go directly to the bigger guns.
Again, if you are fat, or you drink alcohol most evenings, or you are a moderate-to-heavy smoker (or, gawd-forbid, all three), then those are the main cause(s) of your snoring and apnea.
It is possible to see the stop snoring pillow or jaw-bra or mouthpiece or nose-thingie as a "solution" to the snoring or apnea problem, that allows you to continue being obese, alcoholic, and a chimney. It's also possible to be incredibly stupid and willfully blind. Oh wait... we're being redundant.
If you are obese (anywhere above 30% body-fat), and/or a drinker, and/or a smoker, the mechanical aids will [help] keep you alive and maybe [help] keep your marriage intact while you get rid of the underlying [major frickin' health] problem. If you use them instead as a way to stave-off the inevitable, then when you finally can't get the "band-aids" to work any more, you very likely don't have any time left, and nothing left to stretch what little you do have.
Your writer here is six feet even (183 centimeters), and tipped the scales at 246 pounds (112kg) when he was scared by his blood pressure readings, the number on the scale, and the fact that he was being sized for a CPAP machine due to ("you sleep in the spare room, Fat Boy") excessive snoring and hundred-episodes-per-night sleep apnea. So, as smart and fine a young (55 year old) fella as he obviously is, he was stupid enough, selectively blind enough (frickin' self-delusional enough), to let himself go that far. He's turned it around, and is hoping he didn't let irreparable damage happen.
You're not supposed to take that as permission. Take it as a warning. Yet another warning, like the ones from your mate and your doctor(s) that you've been ignoring. If not now, big fellah, then when?
Not at this time. We don't DIS-recommend any snore pillow - we just haven't got sufficient experience with them and sufficient reports from long-term users to decide which ones are better or worse. There are other considerations that we'll discuss below.
Well, like many of the other "cures" for snoring, we think that special stop snoring pillows and devices are temporary fixes to keep you alive and healthy while you sort out the real, underlying problem. So, we are not downplaying anti-snoring devices - you can't knock something that keeps you alive long enough to actually fix what's killing you.
We think that, if you are fat and snoring (or worse, have apnea), then the fat is likely the biggest cause. We think that a stop snoring mouth guard, or a jaw-bra, or special stop snoring pillow, or even a throat spray can be a good way to reduce or eliminate snoring and apnea while you LOSE THE DAMN LARD! In the case of just snoring, it's a service and a kindness to your housemates until you get your weight down and stop snoring naturally. In the case of apnea, it's a way to keep yourself alive and avoid crippling stroke while you reduce your body-fat.
If you snore because you are a heavy drinker, well DUH! You have more than a snoring problem. Any of the mechanical aids are just short-term "fixes" that will eventually fail as the alcohol destroys your body.
If you are a heavy smoker, well DUH! again. You have more than a snoring problem. And again, any of the mechanical aids are just short-term "fixes" that will eventually fail as the tobacco destroys your body.
It can be, but that's not guaranteed. Not everybody is an ideal candidate. Not everybody is successful. For those for whom the device works, not everybody gets 100 percent relief. Here, below, are the main points-for (pro) and points-against (con) that we see for these devices.
And we'll start over with the similar view of forced-side-sleeper pillows - many of the points are the same.
The design of the Atlas-T or Atlast Pillow www.atlastpillows.com (is very sensible for a neck-tilt pillow. If it doesn't stink (literally, see below) we'd use it.
NOTE: We are not formally recommending it (that's one reason why that is not a live link, above). We've recently been told that the Atlas-T pillow has been seen with a price of $795 attached to it. Don't be frikken ridiculous. If anybody is asking that for a pillow, you'd be a fool to pay that much. You could KNIT your own, from scratch...
On the other hand, as "unique" as they say their design is, we tried one from our chiropractor (for a bit over a hundred bucks) several years ago that had a similar principle - two higher, squarish side-sections for side-sleeping, a lower cradle area in the middle for skull support during back sleeping, and a small neck-roll portion just south of the noggin cradle, to support and position the top cervical vertebrae.
We loved everything about that pillow from the chiro... except the stink. It was made from some kind of synthetic foam (several densities) and at least one component (possibly a glue) had an unpleasant smell, even though the pillow had been loosely contained in a ventilated cardboard box for months. In other words, the stink would already have dissipated if it was going to... and it was still very evident. With a face right next to it, the smell was not conducive to enjoying a good sleep. Only some people could even detect the odor, but we were some of those people. It had to go back. We looked long and hard for a pillow of similar design only built from high-quality natural latex foam - never found one.
We considered buying a block of latex foam, or some ordinary-style latex foam pillows and constructing a "dream" pillow with all the desired features... but we seem to have misplaced our "round to-it" (sorry... bad pun for native English speakers).
We cringe every time we pay more than sixty or eighty bucks for a pillow, but we've learned that: "You might not always get what you pay for, but you almost never get what you don't pay for."
As indicated above, we think the neck-tilt stop snoring pillow has a slight edge for early, relatively mild snoring problems. If you like to sleep on your back, then that's what we'd recommend. It's also just a pillow, so the only night-time prep, as you go to bed, is to ensure that the snore pillow is right-way up.
Contrast that with head/chin straps that take a little bit of "installation" and adjustment each night (and we're not convinced they'd work a lot better than the pillow), and with in-the-mouth hardware that you must clean and dry and ... well... insert into your mouth each night.
On the other hand, we are persuaded that the in-mouth appliances do work quite well (for those who tolerate them), and on a wider range of snoring/apnea severity. On the third hand, it's much harder to misplace a pillow than it is a chin strap or a plastic dental appliance. On the fourth hand (we had to borrow an assistant from down the hall to supply these extra hands...), the chin-strap or the plastic mouthpiece will fit into small carry-on luggage much more easily than a pillow.
If it works for you, a stop snoring pillow or a snoring chin-strap or a stop snoring mouth guard is much less intrusive and less expensive (in so many ways) than CPAP. The pillow is less silly-looking and possibly more comfortable than an externally-worn jaw-bra. It's slightly less trouble than an in-mouth appliance (cleaning and storage, etc.). It's cheaper, over time, than single-use nasal strips that hold your nostrils open at night - how much will it cost to buy a fresh BreatheRite or similar strip for every night for the rest of your life?.
It's certainly a better longer-term option than throat sprays.
A stop snoring pillow (if it works for you) is also way better than ingesting chemicals to fix a mechanical problem, because there is no such thing as an ingested (or inhaled) drug that targets just the tissues in the throat and doesn't have (probably unwanted) effects all over your body. You'll see these words repeated on all the other pages for mechanical stop-snoring aids, because we really, really believe that pharmaceuticals are a bad idea for snoring relief... even for apnea relief.
Try this stop snoring pillow solution, or the jaw-bra, or the in-mouth appliance, or in-nose clips and nostril expanders before getting involved with pharmaceuticals, CPAP, or surgery. It's not that we're recommending against CPAP, if you have diagnosed obstructive sleep apnea (or would if you weren't too chicken to see a doctor and get tested). But if a hundred-dollar piece of plastic foam in a pillow-slip can solve the problem, then why go to all the trouble and expense of CPAP? However, if you do have a sleep apnea problem, you and your doctor should keep tabs to:
a) ensure that the stop snoring pillow actually makes the apnea problem go away
b) ensure that apnea doesn't come back after some time, even though you continue using the snore pillow.
If this page wasn't where you wanted to be, then from this 'stop snoring pillow' page, go back to the home page.
Or, return to the snoring section intro page page where we have a table of links to all the other snoring-related pages in this section of MHT.
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